Logo link to homepage

Report on Aira (Japan) — 7 June-13 June 2006


Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report,
7 June-13 June 2006
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 2006. Report on Aira (Japan). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 7 June-13 June 2006. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.

Weekly Report (7 June-13 June 2006)



31.593°N, 130.657°E; summit elev. 1117 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)

Based on information from JMA, the Tokyo VAAC reported that ash plumes continuing from Sakura-jima reached altitudes of 3.4 km (11,000 ft) a.s.l. during 7-12 June. JMA issued a Volcanic Advisory on 12 June.

On June 10, the Sakura-jima Volcano Research Center reported an increase in low-frequency earthquakes since mid-March and in small tremors with a less than 2 minute duration since mid-May 2006. A thermal anomaly at the volcano grew in size after February 2006.

Geological Summary. The Aira caldera in the northern half of Kagoshima Bay contains the post-caldera Sakurajima volcano, one of Japan's most active. Eruption of the voluminous Ito pyroclastic flow accompanied formation of the 17 x 23 km caldera about 22,000 years ago. The smaller Wakamiko caldera was formed during the early Holocene in the NE corner of the Aira caldera, along with several post-caldera cones. The construction of Sakurajima began about 13,000 years ago on the southern rim of Aira caldera and built an island that was finally joined to the Osumi Peninsula during the major explosive and effusive eruption of 1914. Activity at the Kitadake summit cone ended about 4850 years ago, after which eruptions took place at Minamidake. Frequent historical eruptions, recorded since the 8th century, have deposited ash on Kagoshima, one of Kyushu's largest cities, located across Kagoshima Bay only 8 km from the summit. The largest historical eruption took place during 1471-76.

Sources: Associated Press, Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA), Sakura-jima Volcano Research Center, Disaster Prevention Research Institute (DPRI), Kyoto University, Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)